ALBUQUERQUE, N.M., (AP) -- Emcore Corp., a maker of components for communications gear and solar panels, nearly halved its loss for the latest quarter despite troubles in the solar-panel business.

The company lost $7.7 million, or 10 cents per share, for the fiscal third quarter, which ended June 30. That compares to a loss of $14.6 million, or 29 cents per share, in the same quarter last year, the company said late Thursday.

Revenue rose 70 percent to $75.5 million.

Excluding nonrecurring charges and stock-based compensation expense, the loss was 4 cents per share. Analysts polled by Thomson Financial, on average, had expected a loss of 3 cents per share on that basis, and revenue of $78.5 million.

Revenue from photovoltaics used in solar panels rose 30 percent, but the gross margin was negative 3 percent. The installation of a new manufacturing line was delayed, and the production volume couldn't absorb the added overhead costs.

The Albuquerque-based company expects revenue from solar panels for satellites to rebound in the next few quarter.

The company's fiber-optics and legacy datacom units did better, with revenues up 94 percent and 144 percent, respectively.

Emcore's order backlog declined to $109 million at the end of the quarter from $158 million at its start, partly because of the pending acquisition of a large solar-panel customer meant it was unable to commit to further purchases.

Shares of Emcore fell 45 cents to $4.01 in premarket trading Friday.